Neurodiversity

Neurodiversity is the diversity of our brains.
It’s pretty simple! There are all kinds of brains in this world
and not one kind is better than another! Neurodiversity is an indisputable biological fact.
NEURODIVERSITY IS FOR EVERYONE!

WHAT IS AUTISM:

Autism is a complex neurological disability that affects sensory processing and communication. Autistic people are as diverse as any other group of humans, with individual strengths and weaknesses but we all experience this world in distinctly autistic ways. Lots of people think they know what autism is but the only real experts are autistic people!

WHAT DOES ACCEPTANCE EVEN MEAN?

Acceptance means that we embrace our natural, autistic ways of being. That does not mean no help or therapies, but it does mean those things are done with respect to our neurology and where our dignity, autonomy, civil rights and voices are centered.

WHY DO YOU SAY AUTISTIC INSTEAD OF PERSON WITH AUTISM?

In choosing identity first lanuage, we recognize that it is impossible to separate a person from their autism. Autism impacts how we see, experience and function in this world. We’re not “with autism”, we’re autistic!  Calling ourselves autistic is a declaration of pride in our identities.

WHAT IS WRONG WITH FUNCTIONING LABELS?

Functioning labels are inherently dehumanizing. They are also inaccurate!  We all have weaknesses and we all have abilities and most importantly, we all deserve the same type of respect no matter how we are able to communicate and no matter what you think we are capable of. To label a human being as “low functioning” is to deny our competence. To label a human being as “high functioning” is to deny our very real disabilities.

WHAT IF MY AUTISTIC LOVED ONE DOES NOT COMMUNICATE?

Everybody has a voice! Communication is more than just speaking. There are many ways to communicate as there are to be human.  All communication, whether it is typing, AAC, FC, signing, or behavior is valid! Every person has a voice and every voice matters!

IS AUTISM AN EPIDEMIC?

Autistic people have always been here. Just because the word “autism” wasn’t around, that doesn’t mean autistic people did not exist. What has grown is our understanding of the beautiful diversity of our minds and brains. NEURODIVERSITY! That’s not an epidemic, that’s a wonderful thing.

WHY SHOULD I CARE ABOUT DISABILITY RIGHTS & HISTORY?

Disability rights are human rights! Did you know that disabled people are the largest minority group in the world? Our stories and contributions are important and deserve to be told.

WHAT IS THE SOCIAL MODEL OF DISABILITY?

The social model of disability says that disability is socially constructed. We are not disabled by who we are, but by a society that is not inclusive or accessible to all people.